Celebrating National Moth Week – illuminating moths on a global scale!

Celebrating National Moth Week – illuminating moths on a global scale! - UK and Ireland :

National Moth Week (NMW) 2021 (17th-25th July) marks their 10th year celebrating moths worldwide and is a global citizen science project of the Friends of the East Brunswick Environmental Commission (Friends of EBEC), a 501c-3 non-profit organisation, which follows on from our UK & Ireland annually held #NationalMothNight 2021 (8th-10th July). There is still time to get your mothing records in for Moth Night (8th-10th July) here and there is also a good write up on alternative ways to attract moths to your garden without a moth trap; by sugaring, wine ropes and lights, that is worth taking a look at to get you going through Moth Week too!

Moths are among the most diverse and successful organisms on earth. It is estimated that there are 150,000 to 500, 000 moth species! Colour and pattern variations can be dazzling or so cryptic that they define camouflage. From macro moths as large as your hand, to micro moths as small as a pinhead, their variety and diversity is incredible.

National Moth Week celebrates the beauty, diversity, life cycles, habitats and ecological importance of moths and encourages moth’ers of all ages and abilities to learn, observe and document moths in their gardens, parks and neighbourhoods. In fact, this year particularly encourages children and teenagers to get involved in mothing. So, this is a unique opportunity to become a Citizen Scientist and contribute scientific data about moths. Through partnership with online biological data depositories, participating in NMW helps map moth distribution and valuable information on other life history aspects around the globe. 

It was wonderful to see all the moths flying into iSpot through #NationalMothNight 2021 from the UK & Ireland, so it’s fantastic to now see the fascinating global variations with a spotlight on celebrating moths worldwide for #MothWeek2021

My Moth Week started with a wonderful first night for Moth Night 2021, at an MK Natural History Society (MKNHS)/British Entomological & NHS (BENHS)/Bucks Invertebrate Group (BIG)/Bucks & MK Environmental records Centre (BMERC) memorial for legendary lepidopterists George Higgs, my Dad's moth mentor and an incredible painter of moths, and Gordon Redford, my wonderful Dad and my own magical moth mentor. And what a magical night for moths in their memory it was! With 13 traps set across the wood, and moths galore lit up by UV in the starry moonlit night sky, flying with the stars and the space stations! There were plenty of different moths to the garden and wetland nature reserve traps that I'm used to, so some delightful finds! Just. Too. Many. Moths. To. Mention! This distinctive peach blossom beauty with its pink spotted Liberty print wings is always such a delight to see and a first for me this year, so a real beauty to start my Moth Week off!

And do take a look HERE on how to record globally for Moth Week wherever you are in the world. And the glorious sunny weather is perfect for moths right now, with the added sprinkling of downpours and thunder here in the UK, so whether you; light your moth traps, keep on your kitchen or garden lights, choose other sweeter methods for attracting moths into your gardens at night, or opt to look for day flying moths instead, there should be plenty to choose from!

Here’s a handy guide to the kind of day flying moths you are likely to see here in the UK:


In addition, don’t forget the Big Butterfly Count (16th July-8th August), just 15 minutes in one spot and count the species. And you never know, you might just find some day flying moths in your spot too! And even if you are not sure what kind of moths or butterflies you have found, our friendly iSpot community is as ever always on hand to help you to identify those you aren’t sure about. So, please do #GetiSpotting for Moth Week 2021 to celebrate all the incredible moths flying worldwide day and night through July.

And there is a little something for everyone coming up throughout July and August's 12for12; so whether you love local parks, allotments, marine biology, nature conservation or tigers, we've got you covered...

21 Jul 2021
Rachel R